Shoeing for the Rodeo

Knowing what questions to ask can take a lot of the mystery out of preparing horses for competition

The steer wrestling horse must continue to run at speed as the cowboy gets off the right side to grapple the steer. The hazing horse has to be able to make corrections from left to right keep the steer in line.

After wrapping up the latest rodeo season with the National Finals in Las Vegas, Nev., some farriers might have an interest in shoeing the horses in this popular all-American sport. However, like most disciplines, hoof care for rodeo horses often requires more than meets the eye.

Rodeo horses are required to be fast and are required to make quick turns and stops in many events.

Shoeing rodeo horses requires a workable compromise that allows the horse to do its job, yet remain sound so it can perform for years.

There are a number of factors farriers should be aware before beginning shoeing.

Traction is important for horses in many rodeo events, but be aware that good traction for starting may be too much for stopping and making quick, hard turns.

Shoeing almost any specialized discipline of horses requires certain skills and knowledge about how those horses are being used. Once you start learning what is required to shoe in these disciplines, it is like seeing how a magic trick is done. All of a sudden, it is not so mysterious.

I have found horses are most comfortable when they are left at their natural angles and fit with an appropriate type and style of shoe, regardless of what…

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Chris gregory

Chris Gregory

Chris Gregory is a Hall of Fame farrier and owner of Heartland Horseshoeing School in Lamar, Mo.

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